Mark Vergeer's blog

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What Platforms Did You Envy Back In The Day?

Back in the day one often didn't have access to all current platforms that were out there, especially in the 80s en 90s. Often we were limited to a single specific system in the home or we dreamt about owning a system/console/platform that seemed beyond our reach. A lot of people made up for that by creating a collection of things we did and didn't have access to back in the day just to fulfill those dreams and hopes of days gone past. A games-room or home-computer collection is the net result of that.

Still it is interesting to see what were the systems you longed for/ wanted to own but didn't back in the day or even today? This video is my answer to this question.
An open TAG by Rhydermike which can be found here.

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Mark Plays... Rage Racer (PSone)

I take a look at the third part of the Ridge Racer series called 'Rage Racer'. A game by Namco released in 1996-1997 for the original PlayStation. A game quite different from the first two releases of Ridge Racer where it's not just simply racing but it is possible to advance, get more experience and basically experience a racing career. You can earn money and you get to upgrade your car and/or buy different ones.

You race within 5 racing classes on 4 different four tracks in this game - quite a bit different from the first two Ridge Racers and at the same time they look and feel familiar, especially the start/finish is similar. The car manufacturers found in the game are Gnade (Germany), Age (France), Lizard (USA) and Absoluto (Italy). All types and makes have different features and behaviours. The prologue movie on the game disc is different between American/EU release and the Japanese release. The Music in the game is quite distinct different from the first two releases.

Read more below if you want to see a complete list of all the Ridge Racer games out there.

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Mark plays... Sonic & Sega All Stars Racing (My 1st-' ish' actually 2nd look)

Here I check out the PC version running on Steam (not H2O vaporized but the PC gaming platform by Valve) for the first-ish time. Actually the first video I shot of my 1st race went t*ts up so I had to reshoot it so this video basically is my 2nd look at the game.

I took a look at the sequel a little while ago. I know it is out of order but what can you do, that's just how I do things. So this game is a very cool racing game, 1st in a series at that, from the Sega stable. It was brought out on the Wii, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Nintendo DS, Microsoft Windows , iOS and Mac OS X. Gameplay is very similar to games like Mario Kart, Konami Krazy Racers and Crash Team Racing. Everything is there Sonic and his pals, the blue Sega skies, the over-saturated colours, fast paced action. Love it!

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Games on the new Xbox won't function without a permanent connection to the Internet (rumor mill?)

Sources like Kotaku claim that the new upcoming Xbox console will always have to be online to play games. Even if they are single player games. Without an internet connection the device more or less is a doorstop as it won't be possible to launch any games or apps. It is also said that internet interruptions up to 3 minutes won't cause issues but longer drop outs will halt the machine. And despite Sony denying that the new PS4 won't be able to play second hand games they did apply for a patent for technology doing that very thing. Companies do seem to be drifting away from giving a good customer service. Below are my thoughts on these matters which seems to become a reality for consumers world-wide. If you don't want to read it all, there's also a video :)

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Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed - My First Look

A very cool racing game, 2nd in a series at that, from the Sega stable. Everything is there Sonic and his pals, the blue Sega skies, the over-saturated colours, fast paced action. A fun title that is also available on WiiU, Xbox360, iOS, Nintendo 3DS, PSVita and PS3.

Here I check out the PC version running on Steam (not H2O vaporized but the PC gaming platform by Valve) for the first time.

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Linux as a Desktop OS - how is it this time around?

Ever since the early 90s I have been experimenting with Linux. Editing the xconfig file with VI with all sorts of refresh rates and resolution values making sure not to make my monitor go poof in the dark. I am more or less system agnostic and like to tinker with all sorts of technologies and software so it is not in my nature to become a fan-boy or pick sides. I have been using Macs next to MS-DOS & Windows machines and have always more or less had a spare running some variant of Linux. Often with varying results where it was fairly easy to completely bugger up an install making you start all over again. The way to go was the command line interface combined with VI, both were not very intuitive and it could be a very nasty experience getting it all up and running. I never ended up replacing my desktop completely with a Linux install as there would always be cracks in the foundation, with certain things I needed not working or buggering up. So I stuck with Windows & OS X but the open-aspects of Linux really were a very big pull and I always kept an eye out for new Linux developments. So after many failed attempts to replace my Windows OS with Linux here I am trying it again to see if this time around it is all worth it.

Read more below to see/experience how it all went.

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Mark plays... Zanac X (PS1)

In this video I take a look at the Japanese Playstation disc with the game Zanac X which is becoming more rare by the day :( Go check it out.

Zanac is a very cool series of Shmup games created by Compile. The game originated on the MSX and NES but also found its way on many other systems like this Playstation One version. It's very similar to other Compile shmups like PowerStrike, Aleste, Super Aleste, M.U.S.H.A. All these games feature a similar weapons system.

Other good Compile shmups are Blazing Lazers on the TG16 and Gunnac on the Nes.

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Mark plays... Boggy'84 (MSX & Arcade)

A nice little platformer with gameplay somewhat remeniscent of that of Burgertime & Mappy. It was brought out on the MSX platform in Japan and also had an Arcade version out in Japan.
In this clip I show the MSX version and the Arcade version and talk a little about the differences between the two and try to play the game as well.

Taito released this in 1984.

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Windows 8 - issues resolved?

Windows 8 you either hate or love it, it's hard to somehow be in between. I've discovered it works great on a media center PC as well as a tablet but it just won't work well on a desktop PC or a Laptop/Notebook where you are using various programs in a multi tasking environment. On a productive system the Metro (I somehow keep calling it Metroid in the video :P ) interface keeps getting in the way.

I found a solution. Read more below.

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Mark plays... Space Manbow (MSX2)

Space Manbow by Konami was a great shmup that shared a lot of family resemblances to Gradius and Parodius. It featured a very similar weapons system. A great game and a must-have for any MSX2 owner who likes shmups.
Sadly this game never was released outside of Japan.

It did come out on cell-phones/mobile phones in Japan in 2006 and it came out on the Wii's Virtual Console in 2009, sadly also Japan only.

The game only comes on cartridge and it features a special SCC soundchip that greatly enhances the sound capabilities of the MSX2 platform. A great looking, sounding and playing game.

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